You are on page 1of 24

Philosophical Antecedents of the Sphere of Exchange

[Cf also M.Friedman, Kant,Kuhn&Ration.of Science about the rules of the game!
And there is then no doubt at all, Kuhn further suggests, that science, throughout its development,
has become an increasingly effcient instrument for achieving this end. In this sense, therefore,
there is also no doubt at all that science as a whole is a rational enterprise.
This Kuhnian defense of the rationality of scientifc knowledge from the threat of conceptual
relativism misses the point, I believe, of the real challenge to such rationality arising from Kuhns
own historiographical work. For it is surely uncontroversial that the scientifc enterprise as a whole
has in fact become an ever more effcient instrument for puzzle-solving in Kuhns sensefor
maximizing quantitative accuracy, precision, simplicity, and so on in adjusting theoretical
predictions to phenomenological results of measurement. What is controversial, rather, is the
further idea that the scientifc enterprise thereby counts as a privileged model or exemplar of
rational knowledge ofrational inquiry intonature. And the reasons for this have nothing to do
with doubts about the incontrovertible predictive success of the scientifc enterprisethey do not
call into question, that is, the instrumental rationality of this enterprise. What has been called
into question, rather, is what Jurgen Habermas calls communicative
rationality.12Communicative rationality, unlike instrumental rationality, is
concerned not so much with choosing effcient means to a given end, but rather with securing
mutually agreed upon principles of reasoning whereby a given community of speakers can
rationally adjudicate their diferences of opinion.
11. Kuhn, Afterwords note 1! a"ove#, $$. %%8&%%'.
12. See Habermas,(heorie des Kommunikativen )andelns (Frankfurt: Suhrkamp, 1981), vol.
1, chapter 1; translated as (he (heory of Communicative Action (Boston: Beacon, 1984).]
What Mach calls a thought experiment is of course not an experiment at all. At bottom it
is a grammatical investigation.
Ludwig Wittgenstein, Philosophical Remarks (19!" p. #
Empiricism and Machism Infuence on Neoclassical Theory.
Schop. to Mach
Neoclassical Theory is unthinkable without both Schopenhauers ethical metaphysics and
Machs philosophy of science. And Machs philosophy of science is unthinkable without the
flter of Schopenhauers empiricism and pessimism, not without the all-important
mediation of Kants critique of Hume and Schopenhauers critique of Kant, after which
Machism will become not just a Weltanschauung but rather a Lebensphilosophie.
A World separates the truth of the British empiricists and of Classical Political
Economy from the truth of the negatives Denken contemplative the former (a
stable, immutable adaequatio mentis et rei that does not challenge the Newtonian
mechanistic vision of reality [Berkeley, Hume], epistemology [Locke], and even of
self-identity [Hume]) and the activist notion of truth canvassed by the latter.
The distinction lies in the fact that British empiricism involves a subjectivism of
both experience and values (also founded on experience as in Lockes nominalism)
that does not theorise the relationship of Subject to Object in its practical
ethical and political dimension.
The empiricist perspective interprets reality entirely from within the world of
human perception and from without its quidditas, its thinginess; in other
words, empiricism does not seek to pose the problem of the thing in itself even
when, as in Berkeley, it denies its substance as matter. British empiricism, from
Hobbes and Bacon to Locke and Hume, is profoundly subjective; its world view
is cinematic or imagistic or pictographic or impressionistic, and delivers a
passive, inert, contemplative Subject: it is more interested in the theory of
knowledge (how we learn things) than in the theory of reality (what things are,
in themselves [an sich] and for us [fur uns]). The empiricists had a subjective
perspective on what they still believed and considered to be objective truth, even
in the skeptical Humean version.
Despite his insistence that the guide of life is not reason but custom, Humes
denial of the existence of a necessary causal link between cause and efect
betrays the very rationalist bias that his skepticism was aiming to explode!
Even for Hume, the world exists independently of the idea (Vorstellung) and
refers us back to those objects that the subject cannot com-prehend. His
ontology is not idealist; his skepticism does not nullify or deny the validity of
meta-physics but merely exposes the limits of human understanding or intellect
or intellectual reason (Verstand) rationally to com-prehend the world. Similarly,
despite his insistence on the existence of an autonomous entity, Pure Reason, that
could give a conceptual sense to the intuitive content supplied by things in
themselves, Kant could never overcome the insuperable antinomy of noumenon
and phenomenon, the formalism of autonomy and heteronomy. It is by making
this hiatus (Fichte) between the I and the thing absolute that Neo-Kantism
was able to replace Kants transcendental idealism with the formal positivism
espoused by the Austrian School and by Max Weber.
British empiricism confned its subjectivism to epistemology, to how we know,
whilst it still posited the existence of an objective reality whether of things
(Hume, Kant) or ideas (Berkeley). This is why British empiricism could produce
Classical Political Economy founded on the labour theory of value, but not the neoclassical
economic theory that came out of Germany and Austria with its extreme Schopenhauerian
form of subjectivism. The German epigones of empiricism and of classical German
Idealism, from Schopenhauer through Kierkegaard to Mach and then the Neo-
Kantians, extended subjectivism to reality itself by eliminating meta-physics as a
relevant or legitimate feld of human enquiry, either because of its impenetrability
and inscrutability (Kants thing-in-itself and Schopenhauers Will as qualitas
occulta) or else because of its pragmatic irrelevance (Mach once notably said that
things in themselves are superfuous [see Scotts review of Machs
psychologism] a comment that could have been echoed by Peirce and the
American pragmatists and by the Vienna Circle who mistakenly thought to have
the support of Wittgenstein. (The subtle misreading of Wittgenstein by the Wiener
Kreis has been discussed lucidly by KO Apel inSee also Cacciari in K.)
Schopenhauer could rightly claim that Kants grosste Verdienst (greatest service)
was to distinguish between Erscheinungen (appearances) and Dinge an sich (things-
in-themselves) because the British empiricists never inquired into or enquired
about the thing in itself and the active or practical role of the Subject in the
world. By separating Erscheinungen and Dinge an sich, Kant opened up the
entire question of how truth is more than the simple correspondence or
adaequatio of the intuition (Anschauung) to the thing (res) by means of the
understanding or intellect (intellectus), which we call here instrumental reason or
Verstand. For Kant, despite his formalism, as well as for Schopenhauer, despite his
pessimism, the world will no longer be something to be interpreted, to be
contemplated or observed from without; rather it will be a Wirklichkeit (activity,
worklikeness, actuality) that encompasses the Subject and its operari (working or
labouring of the world). Both interpret the cogito (the I think) as being not just an
esse (I am) but also a velle (I will) that implies a posse (I can) whether in its
formalistic Kantian or in its negative Schopenhauerian, or even in the later
dialectical Hegelian and historico-materialist Marxian versions, or indeed in
the evolutionary dimension favoured by Schumpeter and Hayek. The neat
Cartesian dualism of a res cogitans that merely refects or mirrors the res extensa
without inter-vening or acting upon the world to transform its reality is forever
Even as early as Vicos verum ipsum factum itself a late refection on
Machiavellis political realism - the active side of truth had replaced the static
vision of Scholastic memory. Kant wrote in the Preface to the Second Critique:
The starry sky above me and the moral law within me - meaning that any theory
of reality must encompass dialectics, that is, the active role of the Subject (acting
autonomously and rationally, morally) within reality, within the cosmos (the starry
sky). Nietzsche himself will emend Descartess cogito ergo sum to vivo ergo cogito
(I live therefore I think) to indicate the precedence of existence and experience over
thought and reason. The Subject is no longer a receptive or refective or
regulative entity: it now yields - whether in its formal or dialectic or in its
negative (anti-)dialectic guise - a Will that is either free or from which the
intellect or understanding (the Verstand/Vernunft of classical philosophy) has to
be freed to serve a purely instrumental or operational function. The Will
displaces Reason from the pre-eminent position that it had occupied since Plato.
Whereas Western metaphysics since Plato had sought to account for reality as a
static and immutable presence, philosophy after Kant, even when it pretends to
encompass reality in its totality as in Hegel, will seek to preserve the active
role of the Subject, of Reason.
Yet the negatives Denken from Schopenhauer to the Austrian School will chastise all
such totalizing philosophical systems, including Kants critical philosophy, as
attempts to turn the freedom of the will into a freedom from the will to the
degree that the systems of classical German Idealism aim to chain the will to the
rule of reason, even in its Hegelian guise as the ruse of reason (Welt-weisheit).
In reply, the negatives Denken will undertake a supreme efort to privilege the will
in its complete free-dom - a free will that is either a freedom to will or a
will to freedom, and then a power to will (Pouvoir-Vouloir) or a will to
power (Vouloir-Pouvoir). This is the apotheosis of Vichian historicism according
to which verum ipsum factum what is true is not some abstract objective reality
but rather the very doing (factum) on the part of human beings -, but this time in
negative guise, that is to say, the doings of human beings do not constitute a
rational sequence, a Progressus toward a common humanistic goal, an inter esse;
rather, they are the record of meaningless strife and irresoluble confict between
irreducibly selfsh and atomised in-dividuals.
Schopenhauers empiricism becomes more than materialistic or mechanical: it
becomes instrumental, neutral from a meta-physical viewpoint indeed, it
becomes anti-metaphysical and scientifc in its instrumentality (the body is
objectifed Will). That is why, whilst he shares Berkeleys insight that the world
is my idea esse est percipi -, Schopenhauer objects that this superfcial version of
idealism cannot be carried deeper than its vague universal tone to the
particulars of Kants analysis (WWV, p.xxv and p.4). Similarly, Humes
skepticism is derived from the inability of experience understood uncritically
as evident to yield the principle of causation or sufcient reason, whereas
Schopenhauer makes this principle the very foundation of experience (v. On the
Four-Fold Root of the Principle of Sufcient Reason).
Hence, realism and idealism face dogmatism and skepticism in an endless
squabble over the nature of reality and knowledge (WWV, pp.15-6). Hobbes and
Hume, just as much as Berkeley and Kant, remain in a realistic world where
objects (Gegenstande) may well be unknowable or things in themselves, and yet
they still make impressions or images on minds. Even in Berkeleys idealism,
ideas need to be objectifed in God. This is still, albeit in a pictographic
form, a Newtonian world in which even subjective utilities are
commensurable through a commonality of experience as in Benthams
utilitarian worldview.
Schopenhauer frst and Machism later e-liminate this Kantian obscure veil
(Nietzsche) that separates human experience from the world with its obfuscatory
dichotomy of formalistic transcendental Pure Reason on one side and
inscrutable things-in-themselves on the other side that we intuit or perceive as
phenomena and order rationally and causally (scientifcally) in accordance
with the laws of reason. The stated aim of the negatives Denken (negative thought)
with its new empiricism and positivism was to abolish this meta-physics, this
dichotomy or dualism of Subject and Object (noumenon/phenomenon) and with
it to abolish the notion of causality with its Newtonian attributes of space
(external intuition) and time (even in Kants version as internal intuition) as
absolute physical dimensions, and to reinstate (Berkeleyan) empiricism: esse est
Before Schopenhauer, metaphysics is still rationalist and deistic, even though
epistemology is already empiricist. It was Kants attempt to reconcile
epistemological empiricism with rationalist ontology that prompted Nietzsches
baleful sarcasm in his direction: - Kant is an astute theologian. Even as he
expounded on the heteronomy of instrumental reason, Kant still believed in a
transcendental Reason (Vernunft) that con-nects and regulates the intellect with
respect to the thing. Kant sees the technical/instrumental property of logico-
mathematical identities, but these are then subordinated to, indeed they form the
apodictic foundation of, a Reason a transcendental autonomous entity that is a
causa noumenon (Iii of KPV) because it cannot be itself a heteronomous
phenomenon or appearance - that is transcendent and that orders the world
teleologically, has causal truth value, with its ethical-practical judgement. This is
the foundation of Kants Dialectic of Pure Reason that leads to the notion of
Practical Reason. Kant mistakenly extends the apodicticity of logico-
mathematical categories (as being synthetic a priori) to the physical category of
causation. By so doing, Kant sought to overcome Humes skepticism and turn
physical causation into a property of pure reason, independent of noumena in its
reasoning or form and yet originating with and prompted by them in the
sense that pure reason without noumena is empty form:- Thoughts without
sense are empty; sense without concepts is blind. Only thus can Pure Reason
(Vernunft) con-ceptualise and con-nect the various mere phenomena (bloss
Erscheinungen) it perceives through its intuition (Anschauung) and orders
through its intellect or understanding (Verstand), and then link these phenomena
into synthetic a priori judgements or causal laws. Kant himself will gradually raise
doubts about the validity of his critical philosophy from the Third Critique on
Judgement to the Opus Postumum where he will search in vain for an Ubergang (an
overpass) to overcome the formalism of his metaphysics. Yet the necessity of
overcoming this dualism, this hiatus irrationalis (Fichte) between
heteronomous nature governed by scientifc laws gleaned by the intellect
(Verstand), on one side, and then the autonomous source of these laws, pure
reason (Vernunft), on the other, is what opened the way to Hegels dialectic (see in
particular his discussion of Fichte and Schelling).
In Schopenhauer, the Kantian Ding an sich is still present, but this time in the entity
of the Will whose objectifcation is the body. Therefore the external world
exists no longer, as in Kant, as a re-ality (Lt. res, thing), as a world of things or
ob-jects op-posed to (cf. Lt. ob-jactatum, thrown against, and German Gegen-stand,
standing against) the Subject, but rather only as a re-presentation (Vor-stellung)
that the Will makes to itself through the Body, whence the Body does not have an
ec-sistence independently of the Will but is instead the objectifcation of the Will,
that is, an emanation of the Will. This is why for Schopenhauer the World as Will
and Re-presentation (or Idea, Vorstellung) can be com-prehended scientifcally by
the Understanding (Verstand) in accordance with the Principle of Sufcient Reason.
In the Schopenhauerian version of the negatives Denken the world is still a Wirk-
lichkeit, a work-likeness, an actu-ality in which the human operari is
conditioned by scientifc logico-mathematical laws just as it was in Kant,
whose greatest merit for Schopenhauer consisted precisely in this separation of
thing-in-itself and phenomena. Except that Schopenhauer efects a re-versal
(Um-kehrung) of Kants metaphysics: the external world therefore is not an
inscrutable Ob-ject, an unknowable reality of noumena op-posed to (once
again, ob-ject, Gegen-stand, standing against) the Will, - a world of which we can
only register phenomena. But because it is now the subjective side, the Will,
that is the thing-in-itself from which the phenomena, the objectifcations
originate, the scientifcity of experimental observations, of phenomena, is
guaranteed by the unity of their re-presentation (Vorstellung) as subject-object
a unity that overcomes the infamous Kantian antinomies of thought: esse est
percipi what you see is what you get. In Schopenhauers metaphysics there is no
longer any ontological diference between noumena and phenomena, between
reality and appearance; indeed, no such dif-ference is ontologically possible
because all appearances, all perceptions, are equally valid ontologically, though
they may not be so from a practical or instrumental point of view. The task of
science, therefore, is not to distinguish between reality and appearance, but rather
to construct a con-nection between appearances that is as much as possible (a)
economical and (b) certain.
It is most interesting to note the diference between the strict rationalist con-
nection that Kant sought to establish between concepts (empty without intuition)
and intuition (blind without concepts) and the similar designation of science by
the positivists after Schopenhauer and Mach (see Marshall and Dupuit quoted in
Ebert) who seek scientifcity purely in the predictability and certainty of
scientifc theory. For the positivists, science represents the union of mathematical
formulae and empirical facts. The problem with this description of science is that
no mathematical formula will ever tell us the empirical facts to which it is
supposed to be applied, and no collection of empirical facts will ever suggest in
and of itself the mathematical formula that applies to it! In other words, the nexus
between fact and theory or norm is one that is volunteered by the human
theoretician and not ever by nature itself (as was the belief of early scientists
since Leonardo and Galileo). Kant sought a universal telos; the positivists sought
merely to control the world. The diference is that Kant sought a universal human
validity, an inter-subjective truth, in scientifc laws that could support and promote
universal human interests (inter esse, common being or human communion). In the
case of the negatives Denken, instead, such communion, such inter esse, is no longer
possible indeed it is excluded and eschewed a priori by the fact that it is the Will
and not Reason that directs the intellect instrumentally in the pursuit of its entirely
subjective interests. If anything, the instrumental use of the intellect by the Will, far from
establishing a rational commonality of human interests in its application to the world,
fnds this commonality only to the degree that agreement over scientifc laws
furthers economically the private and even conficting interests of human in-dividuals!
The economy intended here is not one that furthers human interests understood
collectively as a universal reality shared by all being human, but rather it is an
economy that is purely instrumental in character and therefore can serve only
the interests of human beings taken as in-dividuals and not collectively. We will
see soon that the very notion of utility that subtends all neoclassical economic
theory is and must be based entirely and exclusively on the in-commun-icability
of private utilities. And because private utilities (a pleonasm) are incommunicable,
the only manner in which these utilities can be measured is objectively, that is,
through their observable manifestation in market prices. Utility therefore does not
explain prices for the simple reason that in neoclassical economic theory prices are
the ultimate facts that allow of no further explanation. Whereas classical
political economy sought to discover a reality behind prices that could enable
the maximization of welfare as measured by a universal substance that is,
labour or labour-time or labour-power -, neoclassical theory does not admit of any
such universal substance or source of wealth. Neoclassical theory understands
wealth in purely subjective terms and that is why prices must be the sole and
ultimate manifestation (not explanation!) of (individual, subjective) utilities.
"oubtless, #eidegger is being $ind %see &almer on #uss'#eid, and intro to K&M(. )ut
he and Scho*enhauer agree that Kants greatness lies *recisel+ in this! ' that he ,idened
the sco*e of *hiloso*hical reflection %meta*h+sics( on to the *ossibilit+ of e-*erience.
.he *roblem is that, in doing so, Kant *osited a dualism of Sub/ect and 0b/ect ,hereb+ the
latter is inscrutable sa1e as it is sha*ed or configured b+ the Sub/ects o,n aesthetic
constitution. .he forms of e-*erience are in1estigated2 but the origin or ground of
e-*erience 3 the )eing of being ' is left to one side. .his is ,h+ Scho*. insists that only
the other side of human being can disclose to us the other side of the inner being of
things. .his is a re'statement of 4ugustines in interiore homine habitat veritas or e1en
of 5icos verum ipsum factum but not in theological terms, in search of the .ruth, or
in ontic humanistic terms %$no,ledge(, but rather in search of the being of e-*erience, of
our a,areness of it, of its hori6on. .he 7ill is the thing ,e $no, best, according to
Scho*enhauer, not because ,e $no, its contents, and certainl+ not because ,e $no, it
as causa finalis or as the summum bonum %Kants &ure and &ractical Reason or &latos
8ood(, but because ,e $no, its boundaries 3 because it is the qualitas occulta 3 the
other side of ,hat ,e $no,, the noumenon that Kant had confused *artl+ ,ith a .hing
[in itself9 and *artl+ ,ith a Sub/ect %Reason [5ernunft9 and the :ntellect [5erstand9 to the
e-tent that it is based on the idea of the ob/ect, the re*resentation [5orstellung9(. :t is
a,areness of the 7ill that is the being of e-*erience, our e-*erience %or ,ith
#eidegger, presentment( of the "ing an sich, the *ossibilit+ of the ,orld, the 7orld'Realit+
or 7elt*rin6i* ,hose im*enetrable limit or hori6on is time itself, the e1er'*re'sent "a'
sein %a,areness of being'in'time, of the *ossibilit+ of nothingness, being'to,ard'death, the
Position [Stellen9 of being'in'the',orld(. &osition is defined on *;<. .hat ,hole section
lucidl+ re*roduces the dialectical *rocess that leads Kant from sensibilit+ di1ided into
em*irical and non'em*irical intuition, or conce*tion, and then to the understanding
and their *erha*s common though un$no,n root [7ur6el 3 note the Scho*. term9, and
the genesis of re*resentations and a**earances from the 0b/ect %to *=>(. :t is this
common root that Kant does not *ursue, turning instead to *ure reason %*=>(.
#ere the similarities of #eid. and Scho*. begin to surface. )oth attac$ at this *oint of
intuition, ,here the sub/ect'ob/ect unit+ in the 5orstellung and ?rscheinung is most
*erce*tible. %K0 4*el dra,s a similar *arallel bet,een #eidegger and 7ittgenstein.(
.his is the ,a+ Scho*enhauer reads his Kant. The Critique
of Pure Reason, he thinks, treats experience as the result of the
conceptualizing of the perceptual material, by hich process this
material of sensation first becomes organized and real! "o he
finds perception in no need of such conceptual transformation,
for it possesses in itself all the concrete reality that is possible
in experience! .hin$ing o,es its ,hole significance to the *erce*tual
source from ,hich it arises through abstraction. @:f ,e
hold firml+ to this, the inadmissibleness of the assum*tion becomes
e1ident that the *erce*tion of things onl+ obtains realit+
and becomes e-*erience through the thought of these 1er+ things
i8., :. **. <A;'<A=2 #K.. ::, *. ;B'
C8., :, *. <A=2 #.K., ::, *. ;D'
;8., :, **. <A='<A<2 #.K., ::, *. ;D'
>BSC#0&?E#4F?RGS CR:.:C:SM 0F K4E..
a**l+ing its t,el1e categories. Rather in perception itself the
empirical reality, and consequently experience, is already
given; but the perception itself can only come into existence
by the application to sensation of the knoledge of the
causal nexus, hich is the one function of the understanding!
Perception is accordingly in reality intellectual, hich is "ust
hat #ant denies.@H
Scho*enhauer thin$s that Kant ma$es a tri*le di1ision! %i(
the idea, %C( the ob/ect of the idea, and %;( the thing'in'itself.
@.he first belongs to the sensibilit+, ,hich in its case, as in that
of sensation, includes the *ure forms of *erce*tion, s*ace and
time. .he second belongs to the understanding, ,hich thin$s it
through its t,el1e categories. .he third lies be+ond the *ossibilit+
of all $no,ledge.@' $he confusion seems evident to
Schopenhauer% &$he illicit introduction of that hybrid, the ob"ect
of the idea, is the source of #ant's errors,&( he sa+s. All e
have in concrete knoledge and experience is the )orstellung;
&if e desire to go beyond this idea, then e arrive at the question
as to the thing*in*itself, the anser to hich is the theme of my
hole ork as of all metaphysics in general!&( +ith this epistemological
hybrid, i! e!, the 'ob"ect of the idea,' &the doctrine
of the categories as conceptions a priori also falls to the ground!&(
i8., :, *. <AA2 #.K., ::, *. =I.
C8., :, *. <AJ2 #.K.. ::. *. =>2 Kr. d. r. 5., **. ioBf.2 M., **. BD f.
G8., :, *. <AJ2 #.K., ::, *. =>.
H8., :, **. <AJ'<AB2 #.K., ::, *. =C.
G8., :, *. <AJ2 #.K.. ::, **. =>'=C.
#t should be noted that $chopenhauer does not recognize
hat, after all, is %ant&s real distinction beteen understanding
and reason, the distinction, namely, beteen understanding as
the faculty by hich e deal ith the conditioned and reason as
the faculty hich demands the unconditioned! The understanding
itself %ant seems to treat in a tofold manner' (i) understanding
in the ider sense, as the fundamental principle of
ob*ectivity in experience, including ithin itself the immanently
organizing function of the productive imagination+ and (,)-
understanding in the narroer sense, as the faculty of *udgment
or interpretation, operating primarily through the categories!!
.his distinction is of great im*ortance for the inter*retation
of KantGs *ure conce*ts of the understanding2 and it should
be noted that Kant e-*licitl+ limits the a**lication of the
understanding to finite e-*erience, to the s*here of the conditioned.
0n the other hand, Kant holds! @:t is the *eculiar
*rinci*le of reason %in its logical use( to find for e1er+ conditioned
$no,ledge of the understanding the unconditioned, ,hereb+
the unit+ of that $no,ledge ma+ be com*leted. @H .he *ure
conce*ts of the understanding, the categories, find their meaning
and their s*here of o*eration in the organic interde*endence of
GCK., in this connection, RichterGs treatment of G5erstandG and G5ernunftG as
used b+ Kant and Scho*enhauer, Scho*enhauerGs 5erhaltnis 6u Kant in seinen
8rund6iigen, **. >== ff.
@HKr. d. r. 5., *. ;IJ2 M., *. C=D.
CI SC#0&?E#4F?RGS CR:.:C:SM 0F K4E..
the different sides of conditioned e-*erience. .he conce*ts
of *ure reason, on the other hand, or the G.ranscendental :deas,G
as Kant calls them, are e-*licitl+ concerned ,ith the unconditioned
ground of e-*erience2 the+ refer to @something to ,hich
all e-*erience ma+ belong, but ,hich itself can ne1er become
an ob/ect of e-*erience.@H :n this sense the distinction bet,een
*ure understanding and *ure reason, in KantGs technical *rocedure,
tends to corres*ond to the distinction bet,een theor+ of
$no,ledge and theor+ of realit+.H
,eyond #ant-s Epistemology% $he .ori/on of ,eing 0 1ntuition and $ime
7hereas 4ristotle *ut the causa causans at the beginning of the causal chain, Kant *uts
the &ure Reason as a facult+ that can com'*rehend the totalit+ of the causal chain, that can
see the indi1idual rings as *art of the chain. )ut Scho* ob/ects that this is inadmissible
and inconcei1able 3 because the causa causans is a ring in the chain, begging the
Luestion, ,hat is the causa causae causantisM 4nd then because Kants &ure Reason, ,hich
see$s to e1ade this endless chain of causation, is not a facult+ toto genere different from
the causal chain as it must be for a successful e1asion, then it remains +et another ring.
4nd if it is meant to be toto genere different, then it cannot be unless it is a qualitas
occulta. )ut because Kant has alread+ nominated the 0b'/ect as the "ing an sich, as the
Lualitas occulta, then ,e ha1e t,o Lualitates occultae, one on the sub/ecti1e and one on the
ob/ecti1e side, se*arated b+ Eiet6sches obscure 1eil 3 a logical im*ossibilit+ because
then there can be no adaeLuatio at all bet,een intellectus and res.
So Scho* turns in,ard, e-amining *ure intuition as the source of the 0b/ect and of the
causal chain. .his a1oids the regressio ad infinitum of 4ristotles causa causans b+ electing
a sub/ecti1e Lualitas occulta as the intuitus originarius for ,hich all beings are
ob/ectifications 3 the 7ill. 4gain, ,e ha1e a transcendental fons et origo, a qualitas
occulta that is not a causa causans but is an intuiti1e origin of being. .his is ,here
#eidegger is connected ,ith Scho*enhauer and becomes his direct descendant. #eidegger
also cannot concei1e of the immanence of being human, and therefore needs to *lace or
situate it ,ithin the hori6on of time 3 indeed, as time itself, as facticit+, but not in
s*ace as embodimentN ', he then needs transcendence as a re*lacement for sub/ecti1it+
and as the foundation of "asein, the interrogation of )eing.
Fnli$e Scho* and li$e Kant, #eidegger does not abolish the ob/ect of the idea so that the
se*aration of .asein from the ob'/ect is retained. .he ob/ect is not an e-'*ression or
ob/ectification of the 7ill. Rather, #eidegger maintains the tension of Scho*s original
intuition, the ec'stasis in1ol1ed in the consciousness of a Lualitas occulta, and turns this
consciousness from a conscious'ness %a Luidditas( to an ec'stasis of "a'sein,
a,areness of finitude and ec'sistence such that the ,orld or )eing hinges on
nothing'ness and "a'sein is thro,n into the ,orld'of'essents! "asein becomes being'
in'the',orld. 7hereas Scho* turns our intuition of the 7ill into the intuition of a Lualitas
occulta, #eidegger turns intuition itself into the intuition of *rimordial time so that
)eing is tem*oralised and becomes ec'static.
.he resulting ga* or tension bet,een )eing and .ime is the result of de'sub/ectif+ing
)eing so that transcendence allo,s the ec'static *ers*ecti1e or s+no*sis of )eing
,ithout a Sub/ect that does the 1ie,ing. .hat is ,hat distinguishes meta*h+sica
generalis from meta*h+sica s*ecialis, namel+, the ontological s+nthesis reLuired to
locate or *osition not the )eing of beings as causa causans, as +et another being that is
a ring in the causal chain, but rather the ,hat'ness of beings or essents understood not
as a substance or substratum but as the dimension or *ure intuition of that chain.
Meta*h+sica generalis becomes a meta*h+sics of meta*h+sics, to Luote Kant. 0n the
ob/ects or essents side, this ontological s+nthesis retains the ob'/ect ,ithout turning
it into a "ing an sich and, b+ reflection, the tem*oralit+ or facticit+ of *ure intuition
into a transcendental sub/ect or ego, ,hich is ,hat Kant ended u* doing. 0nl+ through
finite transcendence and ontological s+nthesis can #eidegger a1oid the soli*sism of
his conce*tion of *ure intuition as time, as intuitus deri1ati1us that retains the
inde*endence of the ob'/ect and does not turn it into an e'/ect of an intuitus originarius.
:t can be said that u* to the %antbuch #eidegger maintained this e-istential tension, but
that later he turned it into a m+sticism of )eing.
#usserl *oignantl+ remar$s in a marginal note in %P/ that he could not see
,h+ sub/ecti1it+, es*eciall+ a *urified transcendental sub/ecti1it+, ,as an
unacce*table basis for *henomenolog+'and b+ e-tension for *hiloso*hical
in1estigation. .o the 1er+ end, #usserl felt that #eidegger had ne1er
understood ,hat he meant b+ transcendental sub/ecti1it+ and the im*ortance of
going bac$ to the transcendental ego. 2or .eidegger, 3asein as not "ust
another name for human sub"ectivity but a ay of avoiding the concept of
sub"ectivity itself! 4s the later essa+s, li$e the @.he 4ge of the 7orld
&icture@%>D;B( and the @Oetter on #umanism@ %>D=A( ma$e Luite e-*licit,
.eidegger could not make sub"ectivity, even a &transcendental& sub"ectivity,
the anchor of his reflection. #usserlGs marginal notes 1i1idl+ sho, us his
dee* disa**ointment, e1en outrage, at #eideggerGs desertion, but the+ ne1er
abandon the hori6on of sub/ecti1it+, the 1ision of *hiloso*h+ as rigorous
science, and the Luest for a reliable grounding for $no,ledge. #is remar$s in
the margins of %P/ all testif+ to this 1ision of *hiloso*h+, a 1ision #usserl
more and more reali6ed that #eidegger did not share and reall+ had ne1er
)ac$ to K&M, in *ar.>< #eidegger reminds us that the ob'/ect of *ure intuition and the
s+nthesis a *riori enabled b+ the transcendental schema %through the subsum*tion that
results in the understanding( 3 this ob'/ect is not an e'/ect, or the creati1e *roduct of the
%di1ine( intuitus originarius as against the deri1ati1us %human and finite(! Kant calls it an
P, the "ing an sich %**>C<'J(. :t is rather the ob'/ect of finitude, of finite $no,ledge, to
,hich ontolog+ must submit and abandon its *ride andQ *resum*tion %*>CB(.
#eidegger is hereb+ re'defining Kants "ing an sich from an un$no,able ob'/ect,
,hich ,ould confine Kant to e*istemolog+, to that ,hose )eing reLuires an ontological
s+nthesis, a meta*h+sics of meta*h+sics or meta*h+sica generalis. 4nd this is the to*ic of
Section ;. &almer again,
$he second issue has to do ith .eidegger's discussion of the "finitude of
human knowledge" as discussed in 45! .ere .eidegger, originally a theology
student, follos #ant in comparing the supposed mode of divine knoing as
originary and creative, an intuition that is intuitus originarius, ith human
knoledge as the reception into knoledge of something hose nature one did not
oneself create! $his #ant calls intuitus derivativus! ,ut .eidegger notes here
also a moment of &finite transcendence,& in that human knoing gains access to
something other than itself, something of hich it had no prior knoledge and
did not create! $his process, the &veritative synthesis,& involves the
synthesis of intuition and thought by hich a thing &becomes manifest& as hat
it is! .eidegger finds in #ant's close analysis of this synthesis a more
nuanced description of hat he had in SZ connected ith &the ontological
comprehension of ,eing,& the hermeneutical as, and his definition of
phenomenology as &letting something appear from itself!& Small ,onder, then,
that 7illiam Richardson, in his length+ stud+, 0eidegger' Through Phenomenology to
Thought, de1otes a <<'*age cha*ter to %P/, calling it @the most authoritati1e
inter*retation of 1eing and Time,@ and referring to the last section of %P/ @the
See his @Kant und die :dee der .rans6endentale &hiloso*hie %>DC=(,@ in 2rste
Philosophie # (34,5634,7), #usserliana 1ol. J! C;I'CBJ, es*eciall+ CBI'CBJ.
best *ro*aedeutic@ to that ,or$.>=
8i1en this manifest caesura bet,een intuitus and ob'/ect %or *ossible e-*erience of the
ob/ect and ob'/ect itself( at *AD #eidegger re1ie,s the relationshi* or articulations
%Fuge 3 : ,ould sa+, stitching the caesuraN( of the 1arious Kantian distinctions bet,een
intuition and its s+nthesis ,ith thought *erformed b+ the imagination and finall+
reflected u*on b+ the understanding. :t is an im*ortant *aragra*h because #eidegger here
notes ho, Kant e-amined the first in the 4estheti$ and the third in the Oogi$, largel+
confining himself to Formal Oogic and, b+ so doing, neglecting to reflect on the
ontological status of the imagination. :t is this s+nthetic unit+ of intuition and reflecti1e
thought that #eidegger focuses on 3 something that anal+ticall+ *uts him ahead of
Scho*enhauer. :t is the inabilit+ of the latter to se, %fugen( these elements of *ure
$no,ledge together that leads to the materialistic e-cesses listed b+ .sanoff %*J>(.
#eidegger 1irtuall+ re*eats Scho*s ob/ection that as Kant climbs u* the ladder of
conce*tuali6ation, a,a+ from *erce*tion, the ser1ant becomes the master %*JD( in that
the understanding no, seems to *osit the ob/ect increasingl+, to re'duce it to an em*t+
schematism of categories until the latter almost dis'a**ears in the *ond of *erce*tion.
.his is ,here #eidegger re'introduces the *rimac+ of time as the hori6on of intuition
%**>IBff(. Eotice that in the no,'ness or *re'sence of being, the unit+ of being in
terms of sub'stance [#eidegger *refers ousia as &almer notes9,,hat stands under or
su*'*orts being( and being'ness, the time dimension of sub'stance, are
inconcei1able se*aratel+ and form conce*tuall+ a unity. #eideggers abstruse 1erbiage
ma$es it hard to dis6cern %,inno,( his meaning, but that is ,hat he is doing %*>>;(. .here
is an intra'mundanit+ of being /ust as there is an intra'tem*oralit+ of the ego or the
self. For #eidegger, being and ego are the interrogation of these 3 ,hat is dis'closed
,hen their not'being or nothing'ness is countenanced 3 resulting in "a'sein and self'
consciousness res*ecti1el+. )ut the *ure intuition of intra'tem*oralit+ is *rimordial
time. :ntra'tem*oral time or the *ure no,'seLuence is ,hat #eidegger indicates as
time, ,hich is simultaneousl+ s*atial.
Eo,, if ,e return to Scho*s notion of the 7ill, it is e1ident that if the 7ill itself is
time'less and onl+ its consciousness %conscious'ness still belongs to the 7ill, ,hich is
the Lualitas occulta, from ,hich e1er+thing s*rings out or is e-trinsic'ated or mani'
fested or ob/ecti'fied( is tem*oral, this is onl+ because the 7ill is the e1er'*resent, the
al,a+s'no,. Oi$e #eidegger, Scho*enhauer refrains from turning the 7ill into the *ure
no,'seLuence, into intra'tem*oralit+. )ut he fails to e-*ress or articulate %fugen( the
7ill as something that can be intuited b+ consciousness as "a'sein, as ?$'stasis or ?c'
sistence that is not sub/ecti1e or a Oebens$raft or 7elt*rin6i*. #eidegger maintains
the tension of ec'stasis, of the ontological s+nthesis through the *ositioning of )eing
in the hori6on of time. Scho*enhauer ends u* ,ith the 7ill filling u* %ob/ectif+ing( all
e-istence or being! #eidegger sees )eing onl+ through the -'ra+ of nothing'ness. .hat is
transcendental imagination.
#ere is &almer on #usserls notes on #eidegger, sho,ing some of the same *er*le-ities on
these *oints!
4 fourth ma/or issue bet,een #usserl and #eidegger in the margins of %P/ is
the nature of the transcendental self. 0o is such a self to be conceived8 According
to .eidegger in Being and Time, both 3escartes and #ant rongly thought of the
famous &1 am& in terms of a static metaphysics of presence, hile .eidegger
anted to see 3asein as a factical, temporally existing entity! As .eidegger
sa it, .usserl in his 6789 lectures on internal time consciousness had already
taken a step beyond #ant in making time a definitive factor in consciousness!
And no here in the #antbook, .eidegger goes further to credit #ant ith
shoing that the shaping poer of the imagination is temporal; indeed, says
.eidegger, imagination &must first of all shape time itself! Only when we realize
this do we have a full concept of time& :6;9<! 2or .eidegger, time and human
finitude, are keys to a more adequate fundamental ontology, and it is important
to make them also the essential core of the self! 2or .usserl, the transcendental
ego functions as the philosophically necessary anchor of his phenomenology! 1n
order to be transcendental, .usserl's transcendental ego ould need in a
certain sense to transcend at least ontic time! :nterestingl+, at this *oint
#usserl instead of differing ,ith #eidegger on the tem*oralit+ of the ego seems
to be tr+ing hard to understand ,hat #eidegger is sa+ing. #usserl in the
margin refers to @the immanent life of the ego@ and as$s! @:s the ego the
immanent time in ,hich ob/ecti1e time tem*orali6es itselfM@ %>B=(, as if he
,ere tr+ing here *rinci*all+ to gras* #eideggerGs conce*t. Oater, for
instance, he ,rites in the margin, as if *ara*hrasing! @.he immanent life of
the ego as, rather, originall+ tem*orali6ing@ %>BJ(. #t ould seem here he is
merely restating hat he understands to be 0eidegger&s point, for he concedes,
9an immanent temporal horizon :of the ego; is necessary9 (3<=)! >hat 0usserl
may be saying is' Time is of course an essential component of the
transcendental ego+ hat baffles me is all this talk about hat time is
9primordially9? >hat is the 9primordial essence9 of time8 >hy is it so
important here8 #eideggerGs ans,er to this Luestion comes in the ne-t
section, ,here he states, &Primordial time makes possible the transcendental
poer of the imagination :6==<! ,ut here .usserl underlines &makes possible&
and asks% &+hat does this 'makes possible' mean>& 2or .usserl, .eidegger is
not describing the experience of time phenomenologically, or even accounting
for it philosophically; rather, he is doing metaphysics and bringing #ant along
ith him! ?es of course there is an immanent temporal hori/on for
transcendental sub"ectivity, says .usserl, but ho does that make the
transcendental ego into &time itself&> @ot only is .eidegger's language
strange here, he also seems to be making philosophical assumptions or claims
about the metaphysical nature of 3asein, hich raises the issue of the nature
of man, and more pointedly for .usserl of philosophical anthropology as a basis
for philosophy. Ma+be #eidegger here is reall+ doing *hiloso*hical
anthro*olog+, #usserl thin$s2 in an+ case, he is not doing *henomenolog+, again
not doing ,hat *hiloso*h+ toda+ ought to be doing.
3ing an sich and $ranscendence
Returning to our starting *oint ,ith Scho*, ,hat ma$es the 7ill or *ure intuition a Lualitas
occulta is *recisel+ the inabilit+ of consciousness to $no, and to be 7ill at once,
because the conce*t of a realit+ is not the realit+ itself! this im'*ossibilit+ ma$es the
Lualit+ of the 7ill or *ure intuition occult, in'scrutable. .hat is ,h+ consciousness can
ec'sist onl+ as self'consciousness. 4nd it ec'sists not merel+ in time, as #eidegger see$s to
establish b+ a**ealing to Kants in'there and out'there. )ut the 1er+ fact that there can
be no *h+sical or *s+chological boundar+ bet,een in and out %and because the+ are
both there, the+ are being(, it is e1ident that consciousness or being'in'itself that is
simultaneousl+ being'for'itself must also ec'sist in s*aceN
.his means that all "asein is at once both in time and in s*ace 3 and that therefore the
Cartesian transcendental distinction bet,een mind and bod+ %res cogitans and res e-tensa(
is fictitious %un'real( and fallacious %false(. %Kant e-*resses this at once ,ith at the
same time, in connection ,ith the *ossibilit+ of e-*erience being also the *ossibilit+
of the ob/ects of e-*erience 3 see K&M, *>C;.( .he mind, consciousness, necessaril+
ec'sists in both s*ace and time if it ec'sists at allN .he Kantian and #eideggerian
*ri1ileging of time is un,arranted. %Kant s*ea$s of e-'*osition and ?$stasis, *>C;. .he
*roblem is that Kant is al,a+s thin$ing of the sub/ect as se*arate from the ob/ect, and
therefore transcending and dominating it.( :ndeed, it is this conscious'ness that is both
self'consciousness and consciousness of being'in'time'and's*ace, that is,
consciousness of immanence, that allo,s human beings to ha1e con'science, scientific
consciousness of their being'in'the',orld 3 ,here ,orld stands for both s*ace and
time, for both mind and matter, for histor+ and nature %see belo, for discussion of these
conce*ts in #eidegger(, so that trans'scendence is utterl+ meaningless.
0nce again, S*ino6as "eus si1e Eatura ma+ be con1erted into Mens si1e Cor*us.
.here is a cor*o'realit+ of mind %/ust as 8regor+ )ateson s*o$e meta*horicall+ of
ecolog+ of mind(. .he ans,er lies alread+ in Kants characteri6ation of the
.ranscendental 4esthetic, ,hich reLuires both time and s*ace in aesthesis 3 ,hich
means also that transcendental aesthetic is an o-+moron, /ust as immanent aesthetic is a
*leonasm. .hat this *roblematic is foremost in #eidegger is e1inced b+ the *aragra*h on
*>C= ,here once more it is the *ossibilit+ of e-*erience and of its ob/ects in reference to
that ,hich ma$es it *ossible that *reoccu*ies him. )ut this that ,hich ma$es
e-*erience and its ob/ects *ossible is erroneousl+ seen as a transcendent facult+ %*>C=,
intrinsic unitar+ structure of transcendence( 3 not an immanent one, as ,e ha1e sho,n it
must be. %)elo, ,e ,ill follo, #eidegger in the anal+sis of the ob'/ect.(
:n the footnote, #eidegger then sho,s that he must ha1e been gra**ling ,ith Scho*s
critiLue of Kant, because he refers to the *rinci*le of sufficient reason as no obstacle to
the ec'sistence of the facult+ that ma$es *ossible the s+nthesis of /udgements, the
acLuisition of totall+ different $no,ledge %*>CI(. )ut it is in e-*osing the
instrumentalit+ of $no,ledge 3 the ina**licabilit+ of s+nthetic /udgements to science 3
that Scho* attac$s Kants schematism %and derision about all good things come in
threes(. Kants lament about schematism is one of the most difficult *oints is in the
*osthumous ,ritings %cited on *>>B(. 7hat #eidegger considers to be the most *unctilious
*art of the KR5 %,eighed ,ord for ,ord, *>>J(, Scho* *illoried mercilessl+ for its
schematism. Kants search for a medium bet,een the understanding and aesthesis that
,ould account for its abilit+ to subsume ob/ects ,ith conce*ts %see K&M, *>>A( ends
,ith the magical unco1ering of the transcendental schema ! ' a gross *iece of
legerdemain. Kant calls it a mediati1e re*resentation [,hat elseM9 at once intellectual and
sensible. :t is neither, in fact, ,e ,ould argueN )et,een generalis and specialis, this is
metaphysica speciosaN .hus begins the .ranscendental Oogic.
:n this being a force, the 7ill is at once the time hori6on and in'concei1able im*ulse, it
is a ,ill'to'li1e 3 the *recursor of the Eiet6schean ,ill to *o,er once Scho*s
sub/ecti1it+ arising from the 5erstand'5ernunft is remo1ed. .he Luestion arises of ho,
the 7ill then comes to be self'consciousness. "ifferentl+ and con1ersel+ *ut, the
Luestion is ho, this unit+ of substance and time in be'ing 3 this *re'sentment of being
3 can be se*arated or as*orted or s*lit from self'consciousnessN Fnless ,e do a,a+ ,ith
all notions of consciousness, of self itselfN #ere .sanoffs /udgement ma+ be a**lied
to Scho* as ,ell as to #eidegger 3 but he obscures the fact that Scho*s critiLue is no,
directed more at #egel %for ,hom Kant o*ened the door( than at the Konigsberger.
&henomenalistic idealism
and 1oluntaristic materialism, aesthetic Luietism and ethical
nihilism, are ad1ocated one after another2 and, ,hile the criticism
of KantGs *rinci*les often la+s bare the concealed inconsistencies
of the Critical s+stem, the solutions offered are as often inadeLuate.
:s not the real e-*lanation of the situation to be found
in the fact that Scho*enhauer is not the true successor of Kant
at allM :nstead of being a neo'rationalist, as Kant, on the ,hole,
remained, he is fundamentall+ an irrationalist, so far as his
attitude to,ards ultimate realit+ is concerned. e is keen in
perceiving and criticising !ant"s confusion of various aspects
and elements of e#perience$ but, instead of tracing their immanent
organic unity, which !ant imperfectly realizes and formulates,
he goes so far, in almost every case, as to assert their actual
separation! .his ,as seen to be true of his treatment of *erce*tion
and conce*tion, understanding and reason. :nstead of
recogni6ing their unit+ in the concrete *rocess of $no,ledge,
Scho*enhauer dogmaticall+ se*arates them in a scholastic manner,
thus substituting a lucidl+ ,rong theor+ for KantGs confusedl+
right one. %&.J<(
4 similar critiLue can be a**lied to #eidegger in the sense that "a'sein, the unit+ of
intuition in time ,hich ,ould reLuire the *ositing of an intuiti1e agenc+ in time, a
being ca*able of consciousness and self'consciousness, then becomes merel+ another
essent ,hose ob'/ecti1it+ %@egen'standlich$eit( is *urel+ the opposition of
ob/ecti1it+ %*>>;( made *ossible b+ time, ,here [time is9 the as*ect [&osition, 4nblic$,
4nschauung9 of the *ermanent %*>>C(.
Ret, ho,e1er refined and so*histical the attem*t %see es*eciall+ *>>;(, ,hat remains is the
in'se*arabilit+ and in'concei1abilit+ of time ,ithout conce*t and therefore sub'stance
or sub'stratum. .his is the Kantian subsum*tion that #eidegger discusses %from *>>;(.
0ur argument is 1irtuall+ identical to S*ino6as "eus si1e Eatura in the sense that time
is co'e-tensi1e ,ith substance, e1en ,here substance can be reduced conce*tuall+ to
*ure conce*t ,ithout s*ace. ?1en in Kants formulation, the in'here, time, and the
out'there, s*ace, reLuire a s*atialisation of the conce*ts 3 ,hich onl+ ser1es to
demonstrate the futilit+ of the attem*t to se*arate themN #eidegger himself refers to *ure
intuition %time( %*DC(. )ut intuition cannot be se*arated, not onl+ from time, but also
from conce*t ,hich is the eidos of thought, nor indeed from the moment of *erce*tion
%the subsum*tion of the ob/ect b+ conce*ts( 3 and therefore from s*aceN %4gain, Kants
reflection entails this conclusion! intuition ,ithout thought is em*t+, thought ,ithout
conce*t is blind 3 but both em*tiness and blindness [sight9 refer to s*aceN( .his
idealism forms the basis of #egels de1elo*ment of Kants Kriti$ in the &haenomenologie
3 the inesca*able fact that hic et nunc are conce*ts %)egriffe(. )ut then the+ remain
conce*ts, e1en ,hen he tac$les the inter'sub/ecti1it+ of conce*ts! ' namel+, the *rocess
b+ ,hich it is *ossible to allo, both the *re'sence of intuition and the a,areness of the
other, and then the *ossibilit+ of beings human that are *art of the out'there, of s*atial
se*aration %*h+sis(. 4lthough not resorting to Kantian schematisms of *ure reason or
*ro'/ections %Scho*, Fichte( into *ractical reason, #egel also remains loc$ed in the
transcendental s*here.
.his is ho, Richardson %#eidegger( summarises #eideggers *osition 3 a *assage ,e
read ,ell o1er a +ear after ,e too$ these notes %N(!
)efore ,e mo1e on, ,e should note that bet,een the t,o t+*es of intuition, time en/o+s a distinct
*riorit+ o1er s*ace2 for in all *resentations the act of *resenting is al,a+s a modifi'[>>B9cation of the
interior sense ,hich ta$es its *lace in the succession of moments ,e call time. )ecause of this greater
uni1ersalit+, time must be more fundamental to ontological $no,ledge than s*ace. .hat is ,h+ the
author in his anal+sis of *ure intuition feels /ustified in restricting himself almost entirel+ to the
intuition, time %7S Richardson, #eidegger! From &h. .o .hought, **>>J'B(
"iscussing #eideggers return to Kants schematism in the conte-t of #egels critiLue of
S*ino6as notion of time in the ?thics, Eegri concludes %S*ino6as 4nti'Modernit+, *B<(!
#eidegger is the e-treme limit of this *rocess, a *rocess in ,hich he is ,ell integrated if it is true that one of
the goals of )eing and .ime is to rethin$ the Kantian theor+ of transcendental schematism,G.< but also a
*rocess ,hich, at the 1er+ moment ,hen it sets off again along the usual trac$s, is com*letel+ contorted.
%*BA( #ere, in this falling, in being this GcareG, tem*oralit+ constitutes itself as &ossibilit+ and self'*ro/ection
into time'to'come. #ere, ,ithout e1er e-*osing itself to the snares of teleolog+ and the dialectic, tem*oralit+
re1eals *ossibilit+ as the most originar+ ontological determination of "asein. .hus it is onl+ in *resence that
fate o*ens u* onto *ossibilit+ and time to come once again. )ut ho, is it *ossible to authenticate "aseinM :n
this tragicall+ tangled s$ein death is the o,nmost and most authentic *ossibilit+ of "asein. )ut the latter is
also an im*ossibilit+ of *resence! the G*ossibilit+ of an im*ossibilit+G therefore becomes the o,nmost and
most authentic *ossibilit+ of "asein. .his is the ,a+ the #egelian theme of modernit+ comes to conclusion!
in nothingness, in death, the immediate unit+ of e-istence and essence is gi1en. .he nostalgic #egelian claim
of )estimmung has become a des*erate ?ntschlossenheit in #eidegger 3a deliberation and a resolution of the
disclosedness of "asein to its o,n truth, ,hich is nothingness. .he music to ,hich the dance of
determination and the transcendental ,as set has come to an end.
Eegri here ta$es u* Oo,iths accurate characteri6ation of the certaint+ of death and of
nothingness as the absolute fi-ed *oint of SuT %*;J, see his first essa+, from *>J(, but
not that of the Kehre, the one cham*ioned b+ Cacciari, to ,hich ,e ,ill turn later.
4t the beginning of Section ;, in *arCA, ,hen introducing anthro*olog+ and meta*h+sics
as *art of human nature, #eidegger *resents the imagination as the essential unit+ of
*ure intuition %time( and *ure thought %a**erce*tion( %*>;=( and then Luotes Kant sa+ing
%4nthro*ologie(, .he imagination is a facult+ of intuition e1en ,ithout the *resence of an
ob/ect %*>;<(. :t is *recisel+ this immaterialit+ of #eideggers %and Kants( conce*tion
of pure intuition as time, its in'substantial Lualit+ that ma$es a Eothing the true
*ossibilit+ of transcendence, and therefore becomes the truth of .asein, its authenticit+.
,y a @othing e mean not an essent but nevertheless Asomething-B according to its essence it is pure
hori/on! #ant calls this C Athe transcendental ob"ect-B perceived by transcendence as its hori/on,
%K&M, *>CJ(.
.o begin ,ith, then, the imagination en/o+s a *eculiar inde*endence ,ith res*ect to the essent,
.he ensuing e-*osition on *>;Jff sho,s neatl+ ho, both thin$ers fail to see that the abilit+
of the mind to imagine ab'sent ob/ects does not in the least mean that its act of
imagining is not an acti1it+ ith an ob*ect, that includes an ob/ect 3 that indeed the 1er+
fact that it is an acti1it+ im*lies the materialit+ of the mind, its being'in3the3,orld.
.he fact that the imagination can dis*ense ,ith this or that ob/ect does not remotel+ mean
that it is a Ooc$ean tabula rasa, or that indeed it is a tabula rasa ,ith *re'formed
intuition and thought articulated b+ imagination, because then ,e ,ould concei1e of
human faculties %#eidegger discusses the ,ord from *>;D( as ca*able of being mental
or *s+chological, that is inde*endent of ob'/ects. For this to be *ossible, for these
faculties to allo, the *ossibilit+ of e-*erience and of the ob/ect of e-*erience, these
faculties must transcendQ the finitude of human $no,ledge and therefore encom*ass
the im*ossible %see *>=J2 see also Eegri Luote abo1e, *BA(. .hat is ,h+ #eidegger
,ishes to a1oid anthro*olog+, to e-*ose its limitations and lac$ of transcendence,
the better to e-alt the merits of ontolog+ %*>;D 3 #eidegger calls an+ attem*t to colla*se
the latter into the former useless and a mista$e(.
#eidegger a**reciates the *oint made abo1e, that intuition cannot be form ,ithout
content %*>=D(. #e Luotes Kant to insist that the forms of intuition %s*ace and time( are an
ens imaginarium that, although ,ithout ob'/ect, are still somethingQ but are not
themsel1es ob/ects ,hich can be intuited %*><I(!
&ure intuitions as @forms of intuiting@ are, to be sure, @intuitions ,ithout things,@ HH but ne1ertheless the+ do
ha1e a content. S*ace is nothing @real,@ that is, it is not an essent accessible to *erce*tion but @the
re*resentation of a mere *ossibilit+ of coe-istence.@ %*><>(
4nd he hastens to add!
.he ens imaginarium *ertains to the *ossible forms of @Eothing,@ to ,hat is not an essent in the sense of
something actuall+ *resent. &ure s*ace and *ure time are @something,@ but the+ are not ob/ects. %*><I(
)ut #eidegger is still reducing the facult+ of intuition and the imagination to a mere
essence and ens that remains *urel+ and firml+ ontological and dis6embodiedN #e
fails to a**reciate that these faculties do not e-ist in 1acuo, but are necessaril+ and
simultaneousl+ bodil+ functionsN .he 1er+ fact that Kant and #eidegger in his ,a$e
insist on this Cartesian 3 hence transcendental 3 dichotom+ bet,een the ob'/ect of
intuition or thought or imagination and *ure intuition or thought or imagination, as
mere faculties dis'embodied, ethereal and trans'scendental 3 this fact re1eals that at
bottom #eidegger remains an idealist *hiloso*her %des*ite his disa1o,al, fn>A, *>==( in
the tradition of Kant and Scho*enhauer. %)ut in the latter the schematism is re*laced b+ a
Oife force that is immaterial in *reser1ing its Lualitas occulta, and a force that Scho*
ultimatel+ renounces b+ going be+ond it intellectuall+ 3 a renunciation that becomes
an acce*tance of the ,orld as its Luietistic mirror in Eir1ana. :t is this :m'*otence
that Eiet6sche e-ecrates and ho*es to o1ercome ,ith the 7ill to &o,er.(
"istant is the *otentia that Eegri disco1ers in S*ino6a2 the *roducti1e indefinite
duration of a**etitus %the lin$ of this Oeibnit6ian and S*ino6an conce*t to das 7ille is
traced b+ Richardson in his #eid. from &henom. to .hought, cha*ter on Eiet6sche.( Oost
as the+ are in their Manichean and Cartesian o**osition of mind and matter, Kant and
#eidegger cannot o1ercome the necessit+ of transcendence. Eegri, for his *art, ,hilst
chastising #eidegger, does not address this *rimordialit+ of time, e1en ,hen contrasting
it to #egels )estimmung and #eideggers Eicht'heit!
$empus potentiae! insistence on presence fills out hat .eidegger leaves us as mere possibility! $he
hegemony of presence ith respect to the becoming that distinguishes Spino/ian from .egelian
metaphysics reasserts itself as the hegemony of the plenitude of the present faced ith empty
.eideggerian presence! +ithout ever having entered into the modern, Spino/a exits from it here, by
overturning the conception of time hich others anted to fulfill in becoming or nothingness *into a
positively open and constitutive time! Fnder the 1er+ same ontological conditions, lo1e ta$es the *lace of
GcareG. S*ino6a s+stematicall+ o1erturns #eidegger! to 4ngst %an-iet+( he o**oses 4mor, to Fmsicht
%circums*ection( he o**oses Mens, to ?ntschlossenheit %resolution( he o**oses Cu*iditas, to 4n,esenheit
%being'*resent( he o**oses the Conatus, to )esorgen %concern( he o**oses 4**etitus, to Moglich$eit
%*ossibilit+( he o**oses &otentia.
:n this confrontation, an anti'*ur*osi1e *resence and *ossibilit+ unite that ,hich different meanings of
ontolog+ di1ide. 4t the same time, the indifferent meanings of being are precisely divided 60eidegger aims at
nothingness, and $pinoza at plenitude! The 0eideggerian ambiguity that vacillates in the direction of the
void is resolved in the $pinozian tension that conceives the present as plenitude! %Ss4'M, *BA(
Small ,onder that, as ,e shall see shortl+, #usserl ,as dri1en to des*air b+ #eideggers
negation of sub/ecti1it+ and the transcendental ego and descent into a *aradigm that, he
thought, could onl+ ha1e legitimac+ as *hiloso*hical anthro*olog+, not e1en as ontolog+
because, as #eidegger himself found out, the inLuir+ into )eing could ne1er be com*leted.
#ere is &almer!
.he Luest #eidegger so ardentl+ *ursued for the meaning of )eing,
a Luest that dominated his *hiloso*hical life, leading him later
into the *hiloso*h+ of Eiet6sche, into reflection on the @origin@ of the ,or$
of art, into e-*licating the *oetr+ of #Ulderlin and do,n @forest *aths@
,ithout end, 0usserl ould say6had he lived to see it6as a dead end, only a
ay of getting bogged don in sub*ective reflection instead of ma$ing a solid
and *ositi1e contribution to *hiloso*h+.
4s #eidegger neatl+ concludes,
#ence, if it is true that the innermost essence of transcendence is grounded in *ure imagination, then the
transcendental character of transcendental intuition is made clear for the first time b+ means of this
inter*retation of *ure intuition. &laced as it is at the beginning of the CritiLue of &ure Reason, the
transcendental aesthetic is basicall+ unintelligible. :t has onl+ an introductor+ character and can be trul+
understood onl+ in the *ers*ecti1e of the transcendental schematism. %*><C(
)ut here the deri1ation of the Schematism from the unit+ or s+no*sis of imagination as
the common root of intuition and thought *laces #eidegger at odds ,ith the Marburg
school of Eeo'Kantains ,ho treat the categories of the Schematism as deri1ed from the
.ranscendental Oogic as Formal Oogic %*><C(.
.he e-change belo, neatl+ summarises the situation. #eidegger first!
.he ,or$ that reall+ has to be done is not hel*ed b+ smoothing them
o1er. For the sa$e of clarit+ : ,ould li$e to *lace our entire
discussion once more under the sign of KantGs CritiLue of &ure
Reason, and once more to fm u*on the Luestion, ,hat man is,
as the central Luestion. .his Luestion need not be *ut anthro*ocentricall+,
but it must be sho,n, &rough the fact that man
is the being ,ho transcends, i.e., is open to @that',hich'is@ in its
totalit+ and to himself, that b+ means of this eccentric character
man is also at the same time *ut into the totalit+ of @that',hich'
is@ as such. .he Luestion and the idea of a *hiloso*hical
anthro*olog+ has this meaning2 not that of in1estigating man
em*irical:+ as a gi1en ob/ect. Rather it has to be motivated out
of the central problematic of philosophy itself hich must lead
man back beyond himself into the hole of &that*hich*is,& in
order to make manifest to him, for all his freedom, the nothingness
of his 3asein! $his nothingness is not an inducement to
pessimism and de"ection, but to the understanding of this,
namely, that there is genuine activity only here there is oppo*
sition and that philosophy has the task of throing man back
into the hardness of his fate from out of the softness of one ho
merely lives off the ork of the spirit!
#ere is the return of #egels negation, no, transformed into a 5ernichtung of the ob'
/ect in order to *reser1e the *rimordialit+ of transcendence. .hro,ing man bac$ into
the hardness of his fate from out of the softnessQ [of9 the ,or$ of the s*irit 3 here is the
e-istential contingenc+ of human being e-tended to the ,orld of signification, of
conce*tuali6ation not in itself but as the comm'union of being human. .he retreat of
meta*h+sics into :ch'heit, into *ure sub/ecti1it+ %Cacciari, *A=(! .he a,areness of the
thing is abo1e all self'consciousness %#eid. cited in Cacciari, &EeR, *J<(! ' ,ith the
conseLuence that the onl+ conce*tuali6ation *ossible is the reified one of .echni$, of
mathesis, of Rationalisierung %Cacciari, *JDff, ,ith reference to Mar- on technolog+ on
*B>(. 4s ,ith 7ittgenstein, the onl+ meaning *ossible is the tautological one of
language games %*J=(. .he rest is Fto*ia.
[&. C<.> C4SS:R?R! : belie1e it has alread+ become dearer in
,hat the o**osition consists. :t is, ho,e1er not fruitful to stress
this o**osition re*eatedl+. 7e are at a *oint ,here little is to be
gained through *urel+ logical arguments. :t seems, then, e are
condemned here to some sort of relati1it+. #o,e1er, ,e ma+
not *ersist in this relati1it+ ,hich ,ould *lace em*irical man
in the center, 7hat #eidegger said at the end ,as most im*ortant.
#is *osition cannot be anthro*ocentric either. 4nd then,
: as$, ,here no, lies the common center in our o**ositionM 7e
do not need to loo$ for this. 2or e have this center, and e
have it indeed because there is one common ob"ective human
orld in hich, although the differences of individuals are in
no ay cancelled, a bridge is built from individual to individual!
$hat 1 find again and again in the primal phenomenon of language!
Everyone speaks his on language, and yet e understand
one another through the medium of language! $here is
something such as the language, something such as a unity over
and above the endlessly different ays of speaking% $herein lies
the decisive point for me! 4nd therefore : start from the ob/ecti1it+
of the s+mbolic Form because here @the inconcei1able
,=, M4R.:E #?:"?88?R
is achie1ed,@ .hat is ,hat : should li$e to call the ,orld of
ob/ecti1e s*irit. .here is no other ,a+ from one e-istence
["asein9 to another e-istence ["asein9 than through this ,orld
of Form. :f it did not e-ist, then : ,ould not $no, ho, such a
thing as a common understanding could be. Cognition, too, is
therefore sim*l+ onl+ a basic instance of this *osition, because
an ob/ecti1e assertion is formulated ,hich no longer ta$es into
consideration the sub/ecti1it+ of the *articular indi1idual.
7e ,ould *art ,a+s ,ith Cassirer here, ,here the Forms begin 3 a neo'Kantian
delusion. )ut the Luestion of meaning does not sto* ,ith linguistic anal+sis. Mathematics
and logic ma+ ,ell be language games2 but language itself is not %cf &iana Oectrs. on
7itt(. )et,een Ratio and Rationalisierung lies *ra-is and not scientia. .he *roblem for
Cacciari %Confronto con #( is that he as$s us to thro, out, not 7ittgensteins ladder after
climbing the ,all or the raft after crossing the ri1er, but the bab+ ,ith the bath,ater %see
his discussion on **BI'>(.
(The world as Will and Representation [Vorstellung])
Lukacss critique of Kants formalism is fully comprehensible only through the
screen of Schopenhauers reversal of Kant.
(Intro. to Goldmanns Lukacs et Heidegger, p.15 in Italian trans.)
(Intro. to Goldmanns Lukacs et Heidegger, p.11 in Italian trans. Footnote refers to
Heideggers Die Frage nach dem Ding, but recall also the Davos diatribe with
Cassirer referred to above.)
Yet it is the very identifcation of subject and object in the representation, as
theorized by Schopenhauer,that opens the way, not to a Hegelian totality, but
rather to a new positivism of isolated facts and isolated sciences as in neo-
Kantism and Machism.